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Today’s #Tango Thought 057: El Corte.

The words "El Corte" translated to English from Spanish literally means ‘Cut, Court, or Edge’. However, in the Tango world the word has another meaning: Nijmegen, The Netherlands. What’s in/at Nijmegen ? A dance studio of certain renown: El Corte! Think of El Corte as one of your GoTo destinations. Assuming you want to experience a quality of dance in an environment that is at once fun, and at the same time entirely engaging on multiple levels. Caveat: You do need to have your sh*t together if you visit, while at the same time you must be willing and open to a whole different way of looking at the dance (again, on multiple levels).

Still another reason to visit El Corte is it is the very foundation of what this page talks about: Social Tango. Sometimes Social Tango is referred to as “Salon” style Tango with one major difference – smaller is better. Salon encompasses a wide range of ideas and practices – open to close to ‘v’ and everything in between. It’s the catchall idea of tango, whereas Social Tango’s 2 primary guiding principles are 1.) Close Embrace – Squared Up or Buttons-To-Buttons, sometimes referred to Core-To-Core. 2.) Smaller. Everything that is done as if you were dancing on a crowded social dance floor in BsAs – Smaller vocabulary, and it’s execution. El Corte exemplifies, embodies, and teaches these ideas, and then some! 

El Corte raised the bar of Salon style tango which would eventually give birth to the modern idea of the Marathon (and then it’s later iteration which was a backlash to the over-popular Marathon concept: The Encuentro) and ultimately moving towards Social Tango. How’s that ? They pioneered the idea of a beer/water/juice/wine bar combined with snacks, lounge chairs, with a refined version of dancing in a small space, while creating a relaxed non-dance studio studio environment combined with an insatiable desire to eXplore ideas of what tango is and could be to create a different idea of  Tango. This combined with what was being taught, how it was experienced, and the personnel that was presenting these ideas in a relaxed environment was a major revolution in tango’s social development. It emulated the experience in Buenos Aires almost better than Buenos Aires did itself.

Want to go ? Go for the ‘Chained’ Salon Weekends (which are free), or plan to spend a week for International Week or Teacher’s Week (yes they have a teacher training course). But really, their crown jewel of the El Corte experience is New Year’s Eve! Quite possibly the best experience in Europe for NYE!

Wait!!! What’s a ‘Chained’ Salon ? It’s a series of Milongas, one right after the other. Very similar to a Marathon concept but with breaks in between each Milonga time period. There’s an afternoon and an evening Milonga. There’s just one catch, and it’s not monetary: When the Milonga stops, you must go outside for about an hour or so, and then reque to get back in!

One thing you do not want to miss in any way, shape, or form, especially during the Chained Salon Weekends is owner, maestro, teacher extraordinaire, and all around fab person – Eric Jorissen. Spend a weekend with Eric and his Chained Salon workshops, and they’ll change your life on dancing in a small space. His ideas on Tango, and the demonstration of these ideas has quite literally revolutionized tango and changed the very fabric of tango in Europe and wherever he has gone really. So if for no other reason than to visit the Netherlands, to dance at El Corte, or to spend a few weeks there to dance, learn, study, practice, play, explore, or to hang out with Eric, you really should go. #SocialTango #SocialDance #ArgentineTango #TangoDancing

PS: There are sleeping spots at El Corte & showers…and dorm rooms that can be rented very cheaply so you could stay and hang out, just something to consider. Visit their Facebook Group Page, or Website for more information. 

see more tango thoughts – have a nice day!

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